If your Toyota has a tyre repair kit rather than a spare wheel, it pays to know how to use it. This ‘weekend workshop’ shows how tyre repair kits work. It’s all quite straightforward when you know how…
Using a tyre repair kit can be quicker and safer than spending several minutes at the roadside taking a wheel off and fitting the spare. On average, repairing a puncture with a tyre repair kit takes just half the time needed to fit a spare tyre.
As soon as you notice your car has a puncture, try to find somewhere safe to stop away from traffic. Be sure to turn on the hazard warning lights and apply the parking brake.
Then locate and examine the puncture. Remember, there are some circumstances when it’s not appropriate to use the repair kit. It shouldn’t be used if the puncture is more than 4mm in diameter, if the wheel rim has been damaged, or if the tyre has been flat or running at low pressure for a prolonged period.
If you find a screw in the tyre – a common cause of punctures – don’t remove it. This will only make it harder for the repair kit to do its job.
You’ll find the Toyota tyre repair kit under the boot floor. It consists of a compressor to reinflate the tyre and a bottle of sealant to seal the hole.
The first thing to do is to fit a sticker to the tyre to show that it has sealant in it. There’s another sticker that must be applied to the car’s A-pillar to remind you to change the wheel at the next opportunity.
Next, remove the valve cap on the flat tyre. Take the sealant bottle and screw it on to the valve. Do it up securely so there are no leaks. Remove the cap from the sealant bottle and unravel the hose from the back of the compressor. Screw that hose on to the sealant bottle, and make sure it’s done up tightly.
Unwind the compressor’s wiring, and plug it in to the auxiliary socket inside the car. If you’re driving a non-hybrid vehicle, once the compressor is plugged in turn on the engine. If the car with the puncture is a hybrid, have the ‘ready’ light on.
You can now turn on the compressor. It should take no more than 10 minutes to inflate the tyre to an acceptable pressure. When the tyre looks to be properly inflated, turn off the compressor and press the yellow button to check the pressure.
Once the tyre is correctly inflated, unscrew the sealant bottle from the tyre and replace the valve cap. If the tyre doesn’t reach the minimum pressure given in the owner’s manual, you will need to contact your breakdown cover provider to arrange recovery of the car.
Put the repair kit back in your car. Drive two or three miles to allow the sealant to move around the tyre and repair the puncture.
Stop and check the tyre again, looking for signs of damage. If you find any, don’t drive the car further and call your breakdown provider.
If there’s no damage, fit the kit again and inflate the tyre to the pressure given in your handbook. It may have lost a little air over the two or three miles you drove the car to spread the sealant.
The tyre has now been repaired, but you should continue to drive with caution, staying below 50mph and cornering, accelerating and braking gently.
The repair isn’t intended as a long-term solution. You should have a replacement tyre fitted as soon as you can. Your local Toyota dealer will be able to provide a suitable new tyre at a competitive price.